Saturday, June 13, 2015

U.S. Air Force, Navy build inert mines for BALTOPS 15

by Senior Airman Malia Jenkins
Minot Air Force Base Public Affairs

6/13/2015 - ROYAL AIR FORCE FAIRFORD, England  -- Minemen from the Navy Munitions Command Unit Charleston and Airmen from the 5th Munitions Squadron out of Minot Air Force Base, North Dakota, built 18 inert MK-62 Quick Strike Mines, June 10, 2015 to be loaded onto two B-52H Stratofortress participating in the BALTOPS 15 exercise.

The B-52 used the inert MK-62 Quick Strike Mines to train and test the aircrew's ability to precisely drop munitions into a target zone.

"These bombs are configured for the B-52 internal bomb bay," said Petty Officer 1st Class David Toyloy, Navy Munitions Command Unit Charleston mineman. "We build them up, and once they're built up and quality assurance signs off on them, we turn them over to the Air Force for delivery."

This is Toyloy's second time participating in BALTOPS, which provides an opportunity for personnel from different services and nations to engage in realistic maritime training to build experience and teamwork and strengthen interoperability.

"It's important to participate in this exercise because it prepares us to work better with our allies and in a joint military environment," Toyloy said.

The Air Force's strategic bomber participation in BALTOPS 15 emphasizes the conventional, long range, global strike and precision attack capabilities in a joint environment from a forward-deployed location.

"We train with our sister services because it shows we are capable of working with any armed forces: the Navy, Army or Marines," said Staff Sgt. Ryan Cassady, 5th MUNS munitions systems technician. "It shows that as we work together we're able to accomplish more."  

Although this is Cassady's first time working with the Navy in a joint-military environment, he said he knows everybody has a part to play, and the point of all this is to show the United States military is capable of working with their allies and standing up a "warm" base from day one and generating missions.